Children can cause headaches in so many ways, that so many parents can attest to. The good news is, they grow up. The bad news is, the bigger they get, the bigger the headaches. That’s what my mom would say, anyway. Headaches can be aggravated by pregnancy and childbirth, as well as changes throughout parenthood.
Lots of changes in headaches can occur during pregnancy. Hormonal fluctuations during the pregnancy can tend to worsen headaches in the earlier stages of pregnancy, and tend to protect against headaches during mid and later stages of pregnancy. Childbirth itself is a whirlwind of hormones, stress, sleep disruption and metabolic changes in the body that certainly can bring on a migraine, but often the migraine will wait a few weeks to rear it’s very ugly head. Watch out, though, it could be a bad one!
Newborns and infants disrupt sleep patterns, and if it’s a first, the stress of being a new parent doubles the danger. During this time, many women breastfeed their babies and can’t take medications for headaches to worsen the problem. There are methods that can help, though. You will have to put yourself first, occasionally, taking time to meditate or relax, do some exercises to help ward off those headaches.
As kids grow up, the headaches they induce mostly stem from stress, but there can be some other situations that are less obvious. Having a sick child not only stresses a parent, but often disrupts sleep, and can change many lifestyle habits that contribute to headaches such as dietary changes or changes in exercise habits. Holidays may bring lots of obvious stressors, but the family vacation? To some, a smooth sail. To many, not so much. Take a vacation on your own, or with your adult partner, for a couple of days when you get back!
How ’bout those college applications? Exciting? Yup. Watching your child’s hopes and dreams expand and materialize? Yup. Pressure? Yup. You may think the pressure is all on the kid, but in my experience, the parent is feeling it, sometimes even more. Does your child’s success reflect on you as a parent? Well, if you’re feelin’ that a little too much, the headaches are likely to be a sign to back off and take time to reflect on the stuff that really matters.
So, kids can cause headaches, for sure. But always remember the joy and hope they bring to our lives. There has to be some sacrifice, doesn’t there?